Spinning Headlines – Week 50: Blade Runner 2049, Weekend Box Office, Twin Peaks, Metropolis, David Bowie, Watchmen, Geostorm, Star Trek: Discovery…
Hello. I guess it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas now – only a few days of excessive consumerism to go until next weekend. But that’s all about that – let’s check what went on in the previous week.
UPDATE! “BLADE RUNNER 2049” ANNOUNCEMENT TRAILER
Well, there it is. I’ll let it speak for itself.
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
|1||Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
|3||Office Christmas Party
|5||Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
|6||Manchester by the Sea
|7||La La Land
As prognosed, Disney/Lucasfilm’s “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” did some serious business this weekend, leaving only peanuts to the other films being screened out there (the only other new wide release of the weekend, the Will Smith-starring “Collateral Beauty”, took a mere $7 million). “Rogue One” did not break the previous December opening weekend-record of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” though, but it did end up in second place of that list. $155 million domestically plus $135.5 million internationally gave the movie a whopping $290,5 million worldwide opening, so in just a few days it has paid back it’s reported $200 million production budget and change. I guess Disney will be betting on more of those “Star Wars“-spinoffs in the future, am I right…?
“TWIN PEAKS” TEASER COMING BACK IN STYLE
I FEEL AS THOUGH MY STOMACH IS FILLED WITH A TEAM OF BUMBLEBEES. If this is the way Showtime and David Lynch are going to give us teasers of the upcoming “Twin Peaks“-episodes, I’m all for it. Don’t spoil us with any plot elements – just give us these types of little vignettes and moments to rekindle ourselves with our favorite characters.
“METROPOLIS” TO BECOME A MINISERIES
No – this is not a “Gotham“-spinoff (besides, they just need to suddenly point out in their show “let’s take a ferry across the bay to Metropolis” anyway, based on BvS logic). It’s a remake of the Fritz Lang-classic from 1927. Hollywood Reporter broke out the news, that “Mr. Robot” creator Sam Esmail is developing a miniseries-version of the property at Universal Cable Productions. The whole thing is still in very early stages though, and is not set to launch for “another two or three years“, which probably works best in just the case of workload as Esmail has said “Mr. Robot” will end after four-to-five seasons. UCP is said to be prepared to spend up to $10 million per episode in the miniseries.
For the mild chance that someone doesn’t know what “Metropolis” is about, here’s the Cliff Notes: “Like the original film, the small-screen adaptation will take place in a future society where wealthy industrialists rule the vast city from high-rise tower complexes, while a lower class of underground-dwelling workers toil constantly to operate the machines that provide its power. Risking everything they know, two star crossed lovers from opposite sides of the divide must find a way to bring down the whole system.”
I’m open to this idea of a remake – it might have the potential to say a lot of the contemporary times.
REVELATIONS OF THE WEEK, PART 1
Well, some new news of some old things came to light in the past week. The first one would be the revelation from casting director Amy Hubbard, that David Bowie was one of the people considered for the part of Gandalf in the “Lord of the Rings“-films. Apparently this was rumored about even back then, but I have never heard about it. I just recall the rumors about Sean Connery – if they were even rumors or just peoples personal wish-list. Anyways, Hubbard tells that Bowie was simply too busy at the time: “It was a very quick conversation with the legendary Chris Andrews at CAA. I do believe that [Bowie] went over and played for everybody at the Millennium party. That would’ve been New Year’s Eve in the year 1999, which was when the films were being shot. He went over and entertained everybody, but he never auditioned. That’s for sure. We approached him. I’m pretty sure it was Peter Jackson’s idea in the first few weeks that we got going. It was one that he’d always wondered about, and we rang Chris, and [Bowie] was far too busy.”
Interesting story, nevertheless.
REVELATIONS OF THE WEEK, PART 2
Another bit of a blast from the past, but it was also revealed by Gameinformer.com, that there were not one, but two games based on “Watchmen” being pitched at Warner Bros. Interactive at the time of production of Zack Snyder‘s 2009 film. The first game would’ve been an open world third-person action title that centered around Rorschach that would feature puzzle-solving and interrogations, and the second pitch was to create a prequel game that takes place before the events in either the movie or the comics, following several Watchmen characters during historical moments such as the JFK assassination. Both were being developed by BottleRocket, but neither never saw the light of day, until now. Full story in the above video.
DEAN DEVLIN IS NOT HAVING A GOOD YEAR
So, “Independence Day: Resurgence” was a critical and box office-disappointment, the “Stargate“-reboot got scrapped and now the story is that writer/producer Dean Devlin‘s directorial debut is not coming together so well either. “Geostorm“, a Gerard Butler-starring environmental disaster movie from Warner Bros. and Skydance is told to be going through “extensive” reshoots, two years after principal photography was wrapped. The zinger though: Devlin has been pretty much ousted (okay, the official reason is he “didn’t have time”, but…), and director Danny Cannon(“Judge Dredd”) is handling the reshoots with newly intalled producer Jerry Bruckheimer.
The original plot description of the film is a “bit” ludicrous-sounding in itself: “Gerard Butler plays a man who heads into space to prevent climate-controlling satellites from creating a man-made storm of epic proportions. At the same time, he and his estranged brother learn of a plot to assassinate the president.” So – THAT old thing… Who knows what the finished film will be like, as the reshoots are said to make “significant” changes to the film – even adding new characters and recasting new ones. Hey – maybe Aaron Eckhart should play the President…
“GOING IN STYLE” TRAILER
Well, as “men on a mission” was once upon a time a lucrative genre, the millennial counterpart for it has surely been the “old men on a mission”-movie. Here’s another one, from director Zach Braff. Full synopsis here:
“Oscar winners Morgan Freeman (“Million Dollar Baby”), Michael Caine (“The Cider House Rules,” “Hannah and Her Sisters”) and Alan Arkin (“Little Miss Sunshine”) team up as lifelong buddies Willie, Joe and Al, who decide to buck retirement and step off the straight-and-narrow for the first time in their lives when their pension fund becomes a corporate casualty, in director Zach Braff’s comedy “Going in Style.”
Desperate to pay the bills and come through for their loved ones, the three risk it all by embarking on a daring bid to knock off the very bank that absconded with their money.
The film also stars two-time Oscar nominee Ann-Margret (“Tommy,” “Carnal Knowledge”) as Annie, a grocery cashier who’s been checking Al out in more ways than one. Joey King (“Wish I Was Here”) stars as Joe’s whip-smart granddaughter, Brooklyn; with Oscar nominee Matt Dillon (“Crash”) as FBI Agent Hamer; and Christopher Lloyd (“Back to the Future” trilogy) as the guys’ lodge buddy, Milton. John Ortiz (“Silver Linings Playbook”) also stars as Jesus, a man of unspecified credentials who agrees to show the guys the ropes, and Peter Serafinowicz (“Guardians of the Galaxy”) as Joe’s former son-in-law, Murphy, whose pot clinic connections may finally prove useful.”
“DESPICABLE ME 3” TRAILER
The current 80’s retro-boom is hitting this animated franchise as well, as Trey Parker‘s colorful villain clearly shows.
“STAR TREK: DISCOVERY” LEAD CAST
Sonequa Martin-Green, best known as Sasha in AMC’s “The Walking Dead“, has been cast as the main lead of the show. The rank of her yet-unnamed character is “Lieutenant Commander” – making her both the first non-captain to lead a show in the Trek-universe, but also the first African-American woman to lead the cast of a Trek ensemble, thus fulfilling a years-long goal by the project’s original showrunner Bryan Fuller (who is sadly no longer associated with the series at all, following his departure from the showrunner position). “We’ve seen six series from the captain’s point of view,” Fuller explained. “To see a character from a [new] perspective on the starship — one who has different dynamic relationships with a captain, with subordinates, it gave us richer context.”
This was the biggest piece of the casting puzzle for the show, which has added several casmemebers in the previous weeks. Other ones have been: Michelle Yeoh as Captain Georgiou, the Starfleet Captain aboard the Starship Shenzhou; Doug Jones (Hellboy, Falling Skies) as Lt. Saru, a Starfleet Science Officer and a new alien species in the Star Trek universe; and Anthony Rapp (Rent, Road Trip) was cast as Lt. Stamets, an “astromycologist,” fungus expert, and Starfleet Science Officer aboard the Starship Discovery. The show has also cast three actors as Klingons: Chris Obi (Roots) as T’Kuvma, a leader seeking to unite the Klingon houses; Shazad Latif (Penny Dreadful), who will play Kol, a Klingon Commanding Officer, and protege of T’Kuvma; and newcomer Mary Chieffo as L’Rell, the Battle Deck Commander of a Klingon ship.
Now, what Martin-Green’s casting means for her character’s future in TWD, we do not know.
THE “NICHOLAS CAGE UNHINGED” OF THE WEEK
Whoa. What the hell was that? Maybe the official synopsis can shed some light:
“A powerful action thriller, ARSENAL tells the intertwining stories of the Lindel brothers, Mikey (Johnathon Schaech) and JP (Adrian Grenier), who had only each other to rely on growing up. As adults, JP found success as the owner of a construction company, while Mikey became a small-time mobster, mired in a life of petty crime.
When Mikey is kidnapped and held for a ransom by ruthless crime boss Eddie King (Nicolas Cage), JP turns to the brothers’ old pal Sal (John Cusack), a plain clothes detective for help. In order to rescue his brother, JP must risk everything and unleash his vengeance against King’s relentless army of gangsters.”
– Ben Affleck gave a short report on the current goings-on with his “Batman”-movie, which he hopes to star shooting next spring: “We’re on the right track with that and everything is coming together,” he said. “We’re still finishing up a script. I’m very excited.”
– Legendary Pictures’ sequels to “Pacific Rim” and “Godzilla” now have new, official titles: “Pacific Rim: Uprising” and “Godzilla: King of the Monsters“.
– Writer/director Josh Boone gave some tidbits about how his “New Mutants”-project came to be. “We had loved this X-Men spinoff, The New Mutants. We had loved Bill Sienkiewicz’s run with Chris Claremont that had Demon Bear. It was really dark, interesting, and different from the typical X-Men stories that we had read. After I made The Fault in Our Stars, we made Fox a comic book. It walked them through a trilogy of New Mutant films that would build on each other. We used this program called Comic Life, and took all the images we had loved from the series and strung them together to show them the movie we wanted to do. We brought it to Simon[Kinberg] and he really liked it. We’ve been going for the past year and a half to get it ready, and I’m about to go location scout and we have a release date now.” So, to no surprise at all, the film is planned to open a trilogy.
Boone also said that after “New Mutants“, he’s set to write and direct the adaptation of Stephen King‘s “Revival“, starring Russell Crowe.
– Patrick Wilson has been cast as Orm aka. Ocean Master, Aquaman’s brother and the villain in James Wan‘s “Aquaman” film. Having previously starred in “Insidious” 1-2 and “The Conjuring” 1-2, this will mark Wilson’s fifth collaboration with Wan.
SPIT-TAKE OF THE WEEK
It’s pretty much this:
I can’t. I just can’t. Is this supposed to be a parody or something? That other Vin Diesel-franchise at least manages to embrace it’s ridiculousness. This just feels forced. Awkward.
That is all.